Tech Services Marketer Wants to 'Better Define Our Brand'

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CHICAGO (AdAge.com) -- Publicis Groupe's Fallon Worldwide, Minneapolis and technology services company Electronic Data Systems Inc., are parting ways, according to an agency executive.

Rob Buchner, chief marketing officer for Fallon, said Fallon has decided to not compete for the business after EDS recently contacted agencies about its account.

"We're going to walk away," Mr. Buchner said.

An EDS spokeswoman said the company is trying to "better define our brand and enhance our reputation" and is seeking the perspectives of outside agencies. Discussions are in early stages and she wouldn't identify agencies.

EDS already has been working with the strategic consulting firm Zyman Group, Atlanta, the spokeswoman said.

'Cat Herding'
EDS assigned its account to Fallon in 1999, and the agency soon created the "Cat Herding" spot for the 2000 Super Bowl. The ad showed ranchers driving cats as if they were cattle across a Western landscape. For 2001, Fallon delivered "Running with the Squirrels," a memorable spot parodying the running of the bulls ritual in Pamplona, Spain.

While EDS invested in pricey Super Bowl ads in 2000 and 2001, its measured media spending has dropped off in recent years. It spent only $4.5 million in 2003, according to TNS Media Intelligence/CMR.